The gallbladder is situated in the upper right side of the abdomen, under the liver and above the duodenum. Its function is to transport the bile produced by the liver into the small intestine when needed. Bile is requested after eating because it is used in the process of digestion. Until then, the bile remains stocked inside the gallbladder.
Sometimes stones can form inside the gallbladder and if they block the bile passage pain, fever and jaundice will install as a sign that something is wrong in the body.
If the doctor thinks that the patient needs to be operated he will tell you that there can be made a keyhole or an open surgery. The keyhole surgery is quite frequently used but is not recommended for those who have scars from other interventions, those who are pregnant and those who have a severe inflammation. The keyhole surgery is performed with the help of the laparoscope. The surgeon will make three or four small incisions inside the abdomen and through those incisions will introduce the laparoscope’s instruments needed for surgery. One of the laparoscope’s instruments has attached an optic video camera which allows the medical team to see what it is inside your abdomen. After that the surgeon will find the gallbladder and will remove it with the help of the other laparoscopic instruments. This operation is known as cholecystectomy. The wounds will be closed afterwards and the patient will be able to leave the hospital after two days.
The open surgery is usually made if the laparoscopic method is not suitable for the patient. The surgeon will make a cut inside the abdomen right under the right ribs in order to perform an open cholecystectomy. Then the gallbladder and the gallstones will be taken out and the surgeon will use X-rays to see if there are any possible gallstones inside the bile ducts and will remove those too. After that the incision will be closed and the patient will remain hospitalized for at least 4 days.
Sometimes people want to think before taking a surgery. This is a good thing because if you are 70 years old this operation could endanger your life. Also you can try other methods of treatment before going to the surgeon. Sometimes the gallstones can be pulled out without removing the gallbladder with the help of a flexible telescope the patient will swallow.
If you must have the surgery done you should get prepared first. You must give up smoking and lose some weight if you are overweight. Also, go to the family doctor and ask for a check up of your other affections. Inside the hospital other special tests might be performed but this depends from hospital to hospital. Take your current medication with you at the hospital but be careful to let the doctor know what pills you are taking before the surgery. Also, if you have no relatives talk to a friend to come with you at the hospital and to stay with you a few days after the surgery.
After the surgery if you had a laparoscopic procedure done, you might feel a little pain where the incisions have been made so be free to ask for some tablets in order to reduce the pain. If you had an open surgery they your pain might be worse and the nurses will give you injections and after a few days they will give you tablets. Due to the anesthetic you might be feeling confused, clumsy and forgetful during the first day after surgery. Try not to make any important decisions in this day.
The nurses will also take care to change daily the wound dressings and at a point the doctor will remove the drain tubes attached to your abdomen. The wounds are free to being washed with soap and water as soon as the dressings have been removed. Feel free to ask for advices from the nurses if you have questions regarding cleaning the wounds. Also, when leaving the hospital do not forget to ask for the sick notes and any additional certificates.
After going home you might be feeling tired and will want to sleep for 2-3 times a day. This is quite normal and you will be able to return to your usual level of activity only after one week in the case of a keyhole surgery or after two months if you have an open surgery. The wound has stitches and you have to go to the hospital to remove them after a few days had passes since the surgery.
Regarding complications they occur quite rarely. If the wound has got infected this problem will be solved with antibiotic drugs in a few weeks. Sometimes there are numb patches around the wounded area but they will clear up in a month or so.
All you need is patience because you can not expect to be as good as new only after a few days had passes since surgery was done.
For more resources on Gall Bladder or especially about gall bladder symptoms please visit http://www.gall-bladder-guide.com/gall-bladder-symptoms.htm